Day 77 | mile 1599.7 - 1615.1 | 15.4 miles

Yea, the barking and growling went on for hours, the streetlight was shining on my face all night, and I was very hot under my bag. Still slept pretty well though. Got up at 6:30.

Pounded the two yogurts, banana, and tea. Chatted with Jeremiah. He is staying at the Bed and Breakfast for $125. So fancy. I wanted to hear all about it, so he told me all the details while chain smoking cigarettes. It sounds delightful. Jeremiah (that’s a trail name) is a high school English teacher. He is in his 60s, has done the whole trail in 2003, and does long sections of it every summer, it seems. He is just so positive and a wealth of knowledge about the PCT. He made it sound like the rest of the PCT is a piece of cake and I would glide right through there. :)

Biked over to get breakfast at the local coffee shop. Breakfast burrito tour continues! This one was ok. A little mojado for my liking. I think it’s because it had good stuff like spinach in it. Tasty, but wet. The giant latte I had was delicious.

They had a hiker box and I scored the most coveted item of them all - the half-empty fuel container. I haven’t purchased one since Tehachapi, I think. (I also did run out of fuel once, so...)

At 9 sharp, I biked over to USPS. Got the package that Alex (with an assist from John) sent me. You know, I’m a little shaky on a bicycle as it is. Staying up on it with a heavy box under my arm was an act of sheer willpower.

Opened the box at the coffee shop and read Alex’s letter. It wasn’t even that emotional, but it made me cry and cry and cry. It’s not because I’m sad. It’s hard to explain why. It always makes me think of Yuval Harari’s Homo Deus when he talks about the reasons humans cry. It’s rarely because we’re sad.

Cheap and this other guy whom I met briefly at Burney Ranch rolled in. I thought Cheap and I were friends but he barely acknowledged me. He was very excited to tell the other guy about his 60 mile day. I guess it was that day he passed my camp in the middle of the night? *eyeroll*

A guy I didn’t recognize came in and introduced himself as Peanut Butter. We chatted for a while. He had done the AT before and plans to put the completion of the PCT on his resume. I gave him my matcha Pocky sticks out of my resupply box because I had way too much food and he has never had Pocky.

Quick grocery store trip for something to put on English muffins, gummy candy, and an apple. Didn’t end up getting either cream cheese or Nutella. But got knockoff fruit snacks and an apple.

I loaded all my food into a paper grocery bag and biked back to the hotel praying the bag handles don’t break off. Miraculously, they didn’t.

Jeremiah was there and I asked for all the details of his amazing breakfast. He was happy to oblige. Man, I could talk to that guy forever. I’m so glad he is an English teacher. I organized my resupply while he was talking.

It was getting real hot and I started packing up to leave. UpDown and Sinatra (his friend I had only heard about) came in! This delayed my departure further because Sinatra asked for podcast recommendations. Don’t get me started on podcast recommendations because I will not shut up.

Finally started hitching at 1:45 or so. All the locals were friendly and waved apologetically. People rarely go all the way up that hill from Etna. Frank, Heidi, and Sadie (the Jack Russell terrier) gave me a ride back to the trail. I was hiking at 2:45.

Hot. Rocky. Steep. Dry. Agh, these mountains are tough. Walked through a bunch of burnt area today. And finally, I’m walking north again!

Only made it 15.1 miles before calling it a day. The next section was going to be a long and steep pass. No campsites for 9 miles. Plus, Unchained is here! Yay! I was hoping to catch up to him today.

Not super hungry and I didn’t get water before camping. So, I just had a bit of tea and Tim Tams and Chex mix for dinner. Going to hike before breakfast tomorrow so that I can get water.

Going to bed early. Yay! The plan tomorrow is to camp just outside of Seiad Valley, then roll in at 7 for a breakfast burrito. Will I ever get sick of breakfast burritos? We’ll find out. (No.)